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Know your Rays: swinging at the breaking ball (Sunday)

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A very fun game.

Raymond Schultz (the guy)
Raymond Schultz (the guy)
Chung Sung-Jun

Monday (Matt Joyce); Tuesday (David DeJesus, an Evan Longoria lookalike); Wednesday (Wil Myers); Thursday (Ben Zobrist, a James Loney lookalike); Friday (Sean Rodriguez)

Saturday: This player is pretty symmetric. If you were to decide he was a lefty or a righty, it wouldn't make much of any difference. Either way, he's swinging at a lot of breaking balls slipping down and away from him, and at a lot of breaking balls getting down and in on his back foot. So combine the fact that he's likely to bite on both of the two most common ways pitchers like to attack hitters with the fact that he swings at every other curve or slider at a rate slightly above average (except for high strikes), and you would conclude that this mystery Ray is not very good at th e plate.

And he isn't. This is Jose Molina.

Correct answers received from: (updated when possible)

Tally now sits at: (updated when possible)

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Once again, these are swing/take heat maps from Jeff Zimmerman's site, www.baseballheatmaps.com. I'm including all curves, sliders, and knuckle curves (according to the MLBAM classifications) thrown since 2007, and comparing a player's swing tendencies to the league average swing tendencies, so a hot color means that the player swung more than average at a pitch in that location. A cool color means he swung less often than average.

Mystery Ray vs. lefty breaking balls:

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via www.baseballheatmaps.com

Mystery Ray vs. righty breaking balls:

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via www.baseballheatmaps.com